Legal Quickie: What Your Contract Says About You

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As a business owner, we often spend a lot of time thinking about how to brand our businesses.

We think through the details of our website,

We fuss over our logos,

We take a million pictures before we get that perfect Instagram shot…

Yet one piece of brand collateral that often doesn’t get thought of that way - are your contracts.

(Yes, I said contracts.)

You see, beyond just having the right terms and conditions, there’s another element at play with your contract. One that can help you reach and book bigger and better clients.

And I’m sharing it in this episode of the Office Talk podcast.

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WHAT YOU'LL LEARN IN THIS EPISODE

  • What is “scope creep”

  • Why you need to know your intended audience before writing the contract

  • The reasons you need to start thinking about your contracts just like a piece of branding

  • How presentation acts as a key component of your contract

RESOURCES WE TALKED ABOUT

 

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Brady Hahn: How to Create Content that Creates Connection

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It’s been said that we all have a story, but do you know how to tell yours?

How could effectively telling your own story help you better connect with your audience? Your clients? Your customers?

Someone who knows all about the value of storytelling when building a brand and business is Brady Hahn, founder of Insight Collective and my guest for this week’s episode of the Office Talk podcast.  She helps entrepreneurs tap into their true leadership potential by focusing on bringing people together through storytelling.

This episode is jammed packed with information that you can use today in building your brand, including the specific steps to take when starting to think about how to present your own story.


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WHAT YOU'LL LEARN IN THIS EPISODE

  • Why you always need to be developing good content for your audience – and what history has taught us about good storytelling!

  • How to loop your content back to something that drives revenue back into your business

  • How to know what to focus on when it comes to developing content – which platforms to love and which to break up with!

  • Ways you can use what others are creating, both in your industry and outside of it, to help design and highlight your own message

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RESOURCES WE TALKED ABOUT

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Legal Quickie: Should My Client Proposals be Separate from My Client Contracts?

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When you get an inquiry from a potential client, you probably send over a proposal or quote that outlines the basic terms of your services. But when the customer accepts and wants to proceed, then what do you do? 

Are they supposed to sign the proposal?

A separate contract?

Or should the contract terms be part of the proposal?

In this episode, I’m sharing three different solutions for this often-asked question: Should my client proposals be separate from my client contracts?

LISTEN TO THE EPISODE

WHAT YOU'LL LEARN IN THIS EPISODE

  • The three different options you can adopt if you use proposals and quotes in your workflow.

  • The one critical thing to look out for if you send out proposals and contracts to your clients.

  • Helpful tools that you can start using today to make the process of sending proposals and quotes way easier for you - and your customers (hint: See “Resources” below!)

  • And much more!

RESOURCES WE TALKED ABOUT

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Katie Hunt: Why Hiring Is Not One Size Fits All

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There’s a saying that goes something like:  If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go together…

As an entrepreneur growing your business, there will inevitably come a time when you’re going to need a little help. It can be tricky though as you try to decide what type of help to hire out.

In this episode of the Office Talk podcast, I’m talking to Katie Hunt, the founder of Tradeshow Bootcamp and the host of the Proof to Product podcast.  Katie helps entrepreneurs create product lines that they can take to wholesale and she has a wealth of experience when it comes to topics such as hiring and delegating tasks. Not only is she a successful entrepreneur, but she does it while being a mama to four young kids! Yes - you read that correctly!

In this episode you’ll hear some great tips on how to start getting the support you need to help you design a business and life on your terms!


LISTEN TO THE EPISODE
 

WHAT YOU'LL LEARN IN THIS EPISODE

  • A common misconception many entrepreneurs make about hiring, and how you can change your mindset to minimize the resulting overwhelm

  • Two specific questions you can ask today to determine if (and where) you need help in your business and personal life

  • How to answer the “I can’t afford to outsource” question – and the easy exercise you can do to figure out if you can.

  • Best practices and tips to learn the art of managing people (yes, it’s an art!)

  • Why hiring an expert to help your business is often the better option over hiring generalists

  • The very first place you should go when starting to look for someone to hire…

CONNECT WITH HER AT

RESOURCES WE TALKED ABOUT

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SHARE THE ONE THING SHE KNOWS FOR SURE

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Legal Quickie: What’s the difference between copyrights and trademarks?

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The last few weeks it seems like everyone is coming out of the woodworks asking me about copyrights + trademarks. And one thing is super clear to me - there’s a whole LAWta’ {<--- see what I did there? Law. Lot. A lot of.} confusion about the difference between the two.  

So in this episode I’m breaking down copyrights and trademarks, explaining the difference between the two and the benefits of officially registering your works/marks.

Armed with this knowledge - you’ll impress all of your friends at your next cocktail party!

 

LISTEN TO THE EPISODE

WHAT YOU'LL LEARN IN THIS EPISODE

  • What is a copyright and what types of works are protected under copyright law

  • The benefits of registering your work with the US Copyright Office

  • What is a trademark

  • The benefits of registering your mark with the US Patent and Trademark Office

RESOURCES WE TALKED ABOUT

GET MY NEW COURSE + 17 OTHER AMAZING RESOURCES FOR YOUR BIZ FOR A LIMITED TIME FOR ONLY $99

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Just some quick math for you - normally my course is $97 by itself. For just $3 more you can grab 17 other amazing courses, workbooks, templates, and trainings to help you reach your big dreams.

Grab yours today at www.yourlegalbff.com/solo

PS - I'm an affiliate so I do get paid when you purchase through my link, but I believe 100% that this bundle will help you make your dreams a reality and I'm so excited to bring you my course inside of a bundle.

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Mel Abraham: Designing a Business + Life on Your Terms

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If you’re an entrepreneur, there’s a lot to know when it comes to everything you need to do to run a successful business. 

Lucky for you, our guest today has spent the last three decades figuring out how to build successful businesses, but more importantly, a business based on the values that are most important to you.

Mel Abraham helps entrepreneurs bring their businesses to the world and build the lifestyle that they want. He has built, bought and sold numerous multimillion-dollar businesses for himself as well as his clients. As the author of the #1 National Bestseller, The Entrepreneur’s Solution, Mel’s strategies have helped build thousands of businesses which have generated hundreds of millions of dollars for his clients, ranging from large corporations to startups and small family-owned businesses.

In this episode, Mel opens up about his journey in business and life (the good, the bad-- and why he once did a webinar with his shirt off!) and how the choices we make in our businesses impact our lives. 

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WHAT YOU'LL LEARN IN THIS EPISODE

  • Why the concept of balance is flawed, and that having a work/life balance is really just a myth

  • The worst business model that exists (and a better way to think about our value)

  • What’s the difference between “conviction selling” and “convincing selling”, and the selling framework that Mel successfully uses in his own businesses

  • Unique (but simple!) ways that we can create connection with others when we’re not sitting face-to-face with them

  • How to deal with “Internet trolls”, be more vulnerable and ultimately connect more with your audience

CONNECT WITH HIM AT

RESOURCES WE TALKED ABOUT

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SHARE THE ONE THING HE KNOWS FOR SURE

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Let's Get Down to Business: The Top Business Lessons I've Learned from this Podcast

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HAPPY FIRST BIRTHDAY TO THE OFFICE TALK PODCAST!

This podcast has been a passion project for me and I'm beyond thrilled that we've made it a full year together. I've got some exciting things planned for the podcast in the next year that I think you’re going to love. 

In this new episode, I thought it would be fun to take a look back on some of the lessons I’ve learned this past year about myself and my business. Some were inspired by conversations I’ve had with guests on this show, and others I’ve learned along the way. In fact this season, I’m going to be sharing more of these insights on the podcast. 

So here we go.

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Creating Multiple Revenue Streams with Eliana Baucicault

Do you constantly daydream of new business ideas?  You want to start a million projects, but you have a hard enough time getting to all those tasks already staring back at you on your to-list?

If anyone can give us insight on juggling multiple projects, it’s Eliana Baucicault of ellyB Events. In this episode of the Office Talk podcast, I’m chatting with Eliana about how she uses collaboration, delegation andthe knowledge of her strengths and shortcomings to grow her business and her team. Eliana not only runs a busy event planning firm, but she also has a high-end modern loft and she hosts The B Academy group coaching program for wedding planners. As if this wasn’t enough, Eliana recently published B Inspired: The Book and in a few months will be launching a magazine as well. Phew! Now that’s a lot.  

This episode is perfect for you if you want to learn how to create multiple revenue streams in your business and how to manage to get it all done too!

LISTEN TO THE EPISODE
 

WHAT YOU'LL LEARN IN THIS EPISODE

  • How to add more revenue streams to your business (without hurting it)

  • The real reason you need to know your own brand inside-out

  • How to hire and why it takes more than looking at the person’s services page on his or her website

  • Why social media is a downfall for many entrepreneurs, especially newer ones

  • Looking to write a book? Hear why approaching a traditional publisher might not be the way to go

CONNECT WITH HER AT

RESOURCES WE TALKED ABOUT

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5 Things You Should Know Before Launching an Affiliate Program

If you operate a business with any types of programs, products, courses and other offerings, you may have considered running some sort of affiliate program to recruit others to help share the news. But before you starting recruiting affiliates,  there are a few things to consider before paying referrals to affiliates in exchange for sales those people bring you. In this episode of the Office Talk podcast, I’ll walk you through a few of the best practices to consider when implementing an affiliate program for your business.

 

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WHAT YOU'LL LEARN IN THIS EPISODE

  • How screening potential affiliates to ensure a good fit will minimize issues going forward
  • Some of the main terms that should be outlined in an affiliate agreement, including compensation structure and affiliate duties
  • Don’t forget the FTC! Here’s what you need to know about the text, video and audio affiliates have to use when promoting your products
  • Systems you can use to both educate affiliate and to monitor their ongoing compliance to your terms

 

RESOURCES WE TALKED ABOUT

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How to Monetize Your Content with Bruno Bornsztein of Curbly

If you’re a blogger, or content creator in the online space, at some point you’ve probably thought about how to monetize your content. You might be thinking of getting sponsors or finding advertisers to get those Benjamins rolling in while while you focus on creating epic blog posts and content.

Or maybe you’ve wondered:

“Should I focus on building a large following?”

“Or forget the numbers and make reader engagement my number one priority?”

“When is the right time to approach a sponsor?”

In this episode, my guest is going to help us answer some of these questions!    Bruno Bornsztein is the founder of Curbly, a website he created to explore the creative side of home decor and foster a community of people who love where they live.  Bruno started Curbly back in 2006, so he’s seen it all when it comes to online trends and specifically, where the world of sponsorship is headed.
  

LISTEN TO THE EPISODE
 

WHAT YOU'LL LEARN IN THIS EPISODE

  • Bruno’s advice for someone just starting out, and why metrics like number of followers shouldn’t be the main focus

  • The formula used to calculate influence, and the different ways you can monetize your influence

  • Why the best time to pitch yourself to a brand really is now, regardless of where you’re at

  • How to develop authentic relationships (and why you’re absolutely going to need this)

  • Why you have to disclose your affiliate relationships, and the right way to let readers know about it

CONNECT WITH HIM AT

RESOURCES WE TALKED ABOUT

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Legal Quickie: Can I Use Photographs of My Client's Wedding to Promote my Wedding Planning Business?

On this episode of Office Talk, I’m answering a question I receive quite a lot when I speak to event and wedding planners.

You see, since event planners are often busy executing and designing the event, there isn’t something tangible left for them to include in their portfolio. That’s why they rely on photographs to help showcase their work and promote their business and services to others.

So the question becomes….

Is there a way for wedding and event planners to legally require clients to contractually agree to provide them with access to professional images after the wedding? If so, how do they go about asking for permission?

I’m sharing the answer in this week’s Legal Quickie episode!

LISTEN TO THE EPISODE
 

WHAT YOU'LL LEARN IN THIS EPISODE

  • The two types of permission you need to be getting – in writing
  • What is a copyright, and can it be transferred?
  • Two things you can do if you aren’t able to get written permission to use the copyrighted material

 

RESOURCES WE TALKED ABOUT

REMEMBER...

Uplevel Your Brand and Website with Irene Hardy

Do you have total website shame?

Do you feel like your website or your brand is missing a little somethin’ somethin’?

Don’t worry, you’re not alone and today’s Office Talk podcast guest, - Irene Hardy, the owner and creative director of Magnoliahouse Creative -  is sharing some of her designer secrets to help you uplevel your brand.

In this episode, she reveals the crucial things that you need to think about when developing your brand identity. Developing a brand is more than just picking a logo. Ultimately, it’s how you make people feel.

I also asked Irene to put my website to the test and perform a live brand audit of my website.  (Yikes!) Tune in and learn from my mistakes as she points out areas where I’m doing things right and where I can improve.

Brands aren’t reserved for just large corporate companies. Even if you’re a solopreneur or a small shop, you’ve got a brand. So listen in on this episode to learn Irene’s best tips for how to create a brand that lasts.

LISTEN TO THE EPISODE
 

WHAT YOU'LL LEARN IN THIS EPISODE

  • If you’re the star of your brand - how to distinguish your private life versus your brand persona online

  • Why you shouldn’t invest a lot of money upfront to brand a new business

  • Easy (and cheap) design tricks that can be implemented to make your site look more professional and grab the attention of a new visitor

  • Common website mistakes people make as she walks through a live brand audit of my website

  • The great debate - should you or shouldn’t you have a picture of yourself on your homepage

  • How to invite fun into your work (which is the reason why Irene started her own business in 2014)

CONNECT WITH HER AT

RESOURCES WE TALKED ABOUT

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SHARE THE ONE THING SHE KNOWS FOR SURE

Legal Quickie: 5 Things You Need to Know Before You Use Customer Testimonials in Your Marketing

When you get a glowing review from a customer, don’t you just want to shout it from the rooftops? Of course you do! As a business owner, you may want to use such reviews and testimonials to help promote and market your products and services.  Maybe you’re putting those testimonials on your website, your sales page or sharing them on your social media.  

It’s no wonder that you’d want to use these testimonials in your marketing. According to one survey:

“[Online customer] reviews are very impactful. The vast majority of participants who have seen reviews claimed that that information did impact their buying decisions. This was true of both positive reviews (90%) as well as negative reviews (86%).”

Well - surprise, surprise - there are rules about the right way to use testimonials in your marketing. And in this episode of Office Talk, I’m breaking down what you need to know before you do!

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RESOURCES WE TALKED ABOUT

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Nagina Abdullah: Recipe for Growing an Online Business (Even While Working Full-Time)

As you’ve and heard (or know from experience!) getting healthy and in shape can be a tough thing to do. How can someone go about doing this while juggling family, a full-time job and launching an online business at the same time? 
 
Our guest in this episode of the Office Talk podcast, knows all about the struggles that a working mother can face when it comes to balancing life, business, and her health. Nagina Abdullah joins us to share her own journey in a demanding role as a marketing consulting, which required frequent travel, and how she leveraged her own weightloss journey into an online business - MasalaBody.com. She’s now developed her brand to a point where she is able to impact the lives of hundreds of women by launching her signature training, Spice Yourself Skinny multiple times a year.
 
Nagina not only reveals how you can lose pounds and feel great while enjoying the process, but shares helpful tips about building a brand (as quickly as possible) so that you have an audience that’s ready to purchase your various offers. She also discusses the importance of investing in yourself, learning from your “failures” and focusing on the quality of your email list and getting the right people there. 

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WHAT YOU'LL LEARN IN THIS EPISODE

  • What benchmark you can use to determine if your idea is resonating with your audience

  • How you can  build your own side business by dedicating just 3 to 5 hours a week to it

  • Why it's so important to talk with your prospective clients, truly understand their problems and research before launching something

  • How spending money on business is really an investment that pays dividends down the road

  • What to do if your first attempt at selling something doesn't work

  • Best ways to become an expert in your field versus just paying for advertising

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RESOURCES WE TALKED ABOUT

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Legal Quickie: 4 Essential Things the FTC Wants You to Know Before Endorsing a Company's Products

Are you a blogger who receives free products or payment in exchange to share a review about that product on let's say your Instagram account or your blog?

Or maybe you're an online business owner and you participate in affiliate programs where you promote another company's products and in exchange you receive a commission for each sale that you refer.

If you're getting paid to create content promoting another company's products or services, then you've got to listen to the latest episode of the Office Talk #podcast. In it, I'm sharing four things the FTC wants you to know before you endorse another company's product or service.

LISTEN TO THE EPISODE

WHAT YOU'LL LEARN IN THIS EPISODE

  • Who needs to make disclosures and why
  • When to make disclosures
  • What your disclosures should say
  • How to make effective disclosures when you're using social media, your website or video to endorse a company's products or services
  • And more...

RESOURCES WE TALKED ABOUT

REMEMBER...

Meghan Ely: How To Use PR to Grow Your Audience (and Your Business)

Want to get people talking about your business? Have you considered PR as part of your business strategy?

If you’re anything like me, trying to get some good PR can sound a bit overwhelming. We’re so busy doing #allthethings that we really can’t handle pitching our story to media outlets on top of all the marketing we’re already doing to grow our audience. And even if we could find the time, who even knows where to start?

Meghan Ely does, thankfully. Meghan, owner of OFD Consulting, very generously shared her PR expertise with us in this episode of Office Talk. Meghan explains how PR can not only get you in front of the target audience, but provide you with valuable third party credibility as an expert in your field. No matter where you are in your business (and budget!), Meghan’s tips will show you how to get PR opportunities and how to make the most out of them to grow your audience and your business.
 

LISTEN TO THE EPISODE
 

WHAT YOU'LL LEARN IN THIS EPISODE

  • Is PR really going to be beneficial for your business?
  • What you can do yourself when you don’t have the budget for PR
  • Best practices for pitching your story to media outlets
  • At what point you should consider hiring a PR consultant
  • What some of the latest trends in PR are and how to be at the forefront of those trends
  • How to capture the ROI of your PR efforts (I know what you’re thinking, “Is this even possible?”)
  • How to ride the wave of your PR opportunities and get the most out of them

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RESOURCES WE TALKED ABOUT

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Legal Quickie: 3 Easy Fixes to Double Check Before You Send or Sign a Contract

When was the last time you took a red pen to your contracts to spot formatting mistakes? Ummmmm….. probably never. Well, believe it or not, minor errors in formatting can make a BIG impact on the way your contracts are interpreted. In this Legal Quickie episode, I’m sharing three common formatting mistakes you’re probably making with your contracts. The good news is they are super easy to fix.

So grab a copy of your contract (or if you don’t have one, check out these templates offered on the website), get your red pen, and have a listen to this episode. 

LISTEN TO THE EPISODE

RESOURCES WE TALKED ABOUT

  • On June 28th, 2017, I’m co-hosting the Masterclass: Is Your Wedding Business Legally Protected? with the folks over at Aisle Planner.  During this hour-long presentation, we’ll cover the answers to some FAQs about your wedding or events-based business as well as answer YOUR questions. Save your seat by June 9th, to take advantage of the early bird price of $34. Full price tickets are $44. Save your spot at www.annettestepanian.com/masterclass
  • Ever wanted step-by-step instructions on how to get your business up and running - the legal way?  Well, your wish, is my command.  Get on the waiting list and be the first to learn when the doors to Your Legal BFF open - www.annettestepanian.com/wait

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Sarah Grear: How the Right Copy Can Get You Sales

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With all the different things we have to think of and the tasks we have to juggle as entrepreneurs, it’s easy to classify copy as “less important” or “low priority.” Why are the words you use on your website, in your emails, and on your social media so important to your business?

In this episode of the Office Talk podcast, copywriter Sarah Grear shares explains how your copy can translate to actual sales and affect your bottom line. If that doesn’t catch your interest, I don’t know what will! Sarah shares her top tips on how to tell your unique story in a way that builds your brand and engages your target audience in order to amplify your sales. Plus, she had some really great resources that I never knew existed but now am not sure how I ever lived without. If you’re struggling with writing your own copy or looking to hire a copywriter for your business, you’ll definitely want to listen to this podcast before you get started.

LISTEN TO THE EPISODE

WHAT YOU'LL LEARN IN THIS EPISODE

  • Why the right copy can translate to more sales
  • The first thing you need to do before you start copywriting
  • How to become a better storyteller and better relate to your audience
  • How to write subject lines that make your audience open emails and take action
  • The first piece of copy you should create for a new service
  • What to expect when you hire a copywriter and how to prepare for the work process
  • How new business owners can create a copywriting strategy without getting totally overwhelmed

CONNECT WITH HER AT

RESOURCES WE TALKED ABOUT

CHECK OUT

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Legal Quickie: How to Draft Contracts When Providing Multiple Services or Packages to Your Clients

Are you a Jack or Jill of all trades? 

Are you doing #allthethings and providing multiple services or packages to your clients? 

Are you confused about how you should address these various services or packages in your client contracts?

If the answer is “oh my dear, YES,” then, you’ll want to listen to this episode of Office Talk.  I’m answering these questions and more!

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Anne Samoilov: How to Create an Engaging Launch That’s Both Successful and Simple

Are you gearing up to launch a new product or service?  Anne Samoilov, creator of Fearless Launching, shared so many amazing tips for a successful (and yet simple!) launch in this episode of Office Talk. 

In fact, even if you have no plans to launch anything right now, you still have to give this interview a listen. Anne’s tips are spot-on for any business owner to improve their ability to make decisions, plan, and execute effectively—in any area of their business, not just when it comes to launch time. It’s like we’re always launching, if you think about it. Every one of us has something we’re looking to get out into the world. Anne talks about how you can begin thinking with a launch mentality, not just for a successful launch, but also for a successful business.

The best part? Anne likes to keep things simple, so all of her tips are attainable and will save you so much time—and maybe even your sanity!

LISTEN TO THE EPISODE

WHAT YOU'LL LEARN IN THIS EPISODE

  • How to create buzz and excitement around your launch
  • The one way to be sure the product or service you’re launching is going to be a success
  • What kinds of questions you should be asking yourself to come up with the best launch plan ever
  • How to practice the skills you need for a successful launch so that planning and executing will come more naturally over time
  • Some time-saving tips to making your launch so much easier and less overwhelming
  • Why you need to start stalking your audience (in the least creepy way possible)
  • How to decide which launch strategies are best for you and how to prioritize those strategies

CONNECT WITH HER AT

Website: http://www.annesamoilov.com
Podcast: http://www.annesamoilov.com/show/
Instagram: www.instagram.com/annesamoilov
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/AnneSamoilov/

RESOURCES WE TALKED ABOUT

*** In the interest of full disclosure, if you purchase a product from Anne using the links above, I may receive a small commission. But trust that I only recommend people and products who I believe can truly make an impact in your business. Cause I've got your back, girl!



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“The one thing I know for sure is that simplicity always wins, no matter what. No matter what you’re talking about, whether it’s a launch or it’s your choice to create a new product or not, you have to simplify things or it gets too hard to manage—and that includes launches, your business, everything. So try to be as simple, keep things as simple as possible.”